There are a few indicators that a sneaker needs to be retired. Knee and ankle fatigue might mean the arch support has broken down, but some of us ‘penny pinchers’ break beyond the pain; that’s not a good thing, and try to eek a few more weeks out of the sneakers.
For those in the know, 12 weeks – 6 months is considered the life of a sneaker, depending on how much use they are getting.
I speed walk almost 6 miles six days a week on a treadmill. Because I wear orthodic arch supports for supination, I don’t feel the arch breaking down. Mine are not going to because they are a graphite type of material. So I need to be aware that my sneakers have timed out by looking for other indicators.
It is easy to tell by looking at the wear and tear of the threads on the sole of the sneakers, but another sure fire way that I know my sneakers need to be retired is when I start to ‘trip’ on the treadmill. The tripping is due to the flattened surface of the sole and is one of the first indicators for me that it is time to let the moths out of the purse and buy new sneakers. The brand I like for speed walking is Nike Zoom Vermero 6.
I get on average 4- 5 months out of my sneakers, and I only wear them on the treadmill when the are in use. When they get retired I wear them around town, because they still look like new, except for the sole. Then when they really need to disappear I take them back to the store where I buy my sneakers, they are then donated to a company who recycles them for the surface of playgrounds.